UW Symphony Opening Night

October 10, 2019 @ 6:45 pm

The University of Wyoming Symphony Orchestra’s (UWSO) “A Musical Mystery Tour” season opens Thursday, Oct. 10, with a concert featuring works by Tchaikovsky, Dvořák and Gwyneth Walker.

“The opening night mystery to be revealed: What is little about the ‘Little Russian Symphony?’” says UW Department of Music Professor Michael Griffith, director of orchestral activities.

The concert is at 7:30 p.m. in the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts concert hall. An opening preconcert reception, hosted by the Symphony Association and sponsored by UniWyo Federal Credit Union, will begin at 6:45 p.m. with light refreshments, music by the UW graduate string quartet and an opportunity to meet other lovers of symphonic music, Griffith says.

Tickets for the concert cost $12 for the public, $8 for senior citizens and $6 for students. Tickets are available at the Performing Arts box office and the Wyoming Union information desk, by calling (307) 766-6666 or by going online at www.uwyo.edu/finearts.

Featured on opening night is Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 2 (“Little Russian Symphony”) from early in the composer’s career. The concert will start with Walker’s “Open the Door.”

The soloist for the Dvořák piece is violinist John Fadial, UW professor of violin. At 11, he performed for President Gerald Ford, and he has since appeared around the globe as chamber musician, soloist and pedagogue.

He has toured internationally for the U.S. State Department as a United States Artistic Ambassador, and has served as concertmaster of the Heidelberg Schloss-Spiele (Germany), and the Greensboro, N.C., Symphony Orchestra for 18 seasons. During the summers, Fadial serves on the artist faculty of the Eastern Music Festival as assistant concertmaster, violinist of the Eastern Chamber Players and director of the festival’s violin internship program.

As a recording artist, he was a semifinalist for the Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music Performance of 2007 for the CD “Where Does Love Go: Chamber Music of Mark Engebretson.” In 2009, he released a disc of the “Complete String Sextets of Johannes Brahms” with the Stanislas Sextet of Nancy, France, of which he is a founding member. Fadial performs on a violin from Naples, Italy, built by Giovanni Gagliano in 1781.

This is Griffith’s 31st year leading the UWSO. This past summer, he conducted orchestras in Brazil and China; lectured at the Grand Teton Music Festival in Jackson Hole; led a conducting workshop in Brazil; and taught a class at Shanghai University for two weeks.

Griffith says the audience on opening night will see many new musicians in the orchestra.

“It’s been a stellar recruiting year. The UWSO has eight new violinists, including two new graduate students,” he says. “There are additions in all the string sections, and new grad students in viola, clarinet, trumpet and percussion. Looking at the world map, the UWSO has new players from Colombia and Vietnam, adding to the existing international contingent from Brazil, China, Iceland and Japan.”

For more information, call Griffith at (307) 766-3069 or email symph@uwyo.edu.